By John Lee.
Shell plans to start pumping gas from its gas joint venture in southern Iraq in the next three weeks according to Reuters.
Initial production will be 60 million cubic feet per day, but Shell's Iraq boss Hans Nijkamp told Deputy Prime Minister Hussain al-Shahristani that output would be increased by a further 40 million cubic feet a day several weeks after pumping starts.
Officials have said that the project will handle 2 billion cubic feet per day by 2017.
In November, Shell and Mitsubishi signed a $17 billion deal to capture flared gas at the country's southern oilfields, which currently burn off more than 700 million cubic feet of gas per day.
Hans Nijkamp, Shell vice-president and head of the company's Iraq projects, told Iraq Deputy Prime Minister for Energy Hussain al-Shahristani that output would be increased by a further 40 million cubic feet a day several weeks after pumping starts, a statement from Shahristani's office said.
The gas will be used for electricity generation and in the petrochemical industry.